What is Schilder’s Disease?
Schilder’s Disease is an extremely rare neurological condition, which is quite similar to another neurological condition called multiple sclerosis; however, both are separate entities (1). Schilder’s Disease affects the myelin sheath, which is the outer layer that covers all the nerves (1).
Why is the Myelin Sheath Important?
The function of the myelin sheath is to protect the nerves (4). Myelin Sheath also facilitates smooth and fast transmission of signals to and from the brain to various organs of the body (2). If the myelin sheath gets damaged, then it affects the way the signals are transmitted to and from the brain.
The damage to the myelin sheath due to Schilder’s Disease affects various involuntary and voluntary functions of the body. Schilder’s Disease is seen to develop in early childhood and the symptoms can be observed between the ages of 7 and 10 (4). Schilder’s Disease is also known by various other names like Diffuse Cerebral Sclerosis. This article gives a brief know-how of whether this condition is curable or not.
Is There a Cure for Schilder’s Disease?
Unfortunately, there is no cure for Schilder’s Disease, but similar to multiple sclerosis with treatment, the symptoms of Schilder’s Disease can be for the most part calmed down (4). Thus the main aim of treatment for Schilder’s Disease is to allow the individual to carry out daily activities with little problem and prevent any further damage to the myelin sheath. However, the response to treatment of Schilder’s Disease differs from patient to patient.
Treatment for Schilder’s Disease
The treatment of Schilder’s Disease is similar to that of Multiple Sclerosis. The patient will be given tapered doses of steroids for a few weeks starting off intravenously and then tapering to low dose oral corticosteroids over a period of the ensuing few weeks (3). Additionally, the patient will be given beta interferon treatments intravenously (3). This will be followed by immunosuppressive therapy to decrease inflammation and suppress the immune system. These treatments should be able to provide symptomatic treatment of Schilder’s Disease.
Physical and occupational therapy also play an important role in the treatment of Schilder’s Disease (4). Since the symptoms of Schilder’s Disease make it difficult for individuals to carry out basic tasks, physical therapy improves muscle weakness and spasms making it easy for the individual to walk and carry out activities.
Balanced nutritional diet is also vital to keep all the organs healthy and functioning. In cases of a Schilder’s Disease flare-up, the same treatments will be administered till the time the symptoms improve. Other than this, the treatment is only symptomatic and supportive for individuals with Schilder’s Disease, as this condition has no cure as yet (4).